Saturday, February 5, 2011

Footprints Worth Following

The picture you see is one of a ribbon with the words "Make Footprints Worth Following" that I found randomly placed in my son's room a few days ago.  As soon as I read the words, I knew it was something God wanted me to see because they stirred something up in my spirit.  I knew then that I would be writing something about it later, but the words weren't formed in my mind just yet.  I only knew that I wondered at that very minute whether I was making footprints worth following...

I was in the middle of cleaning our son's room and this ribbon lay face up on his dresser.  I scanned over it for a second and then picked it up and read it again...and again.  Over the last couple of days, I've been thinking about the words, and every time I've raised my voice to our son or gotten impatient with my husband, that ribbon has floated across the clouds in my head.  It was just this morning as I cleaned the kitchen and listened to Phil Collins on the iPod that I realized what it really was that I was feeling. 

While Another Day in Paradise sang to me from the speakers, I visualized exactly what the songs lyrics describe - a homeless woman shamefully asking a man for help, but in his efforts to pretend he doesn't see her, he keeps walking.  How many times do we, like the man in the song, pretend not to see the hurting people around us?  Homeless people aren't the only hurting people but we're most quick to judge them. "Well, if they would get a job they wouldn't be out there," we've often said.  To that, I say we need to stop judging.  Honestly, who do we think we are that we're in any position to say what another man's life should be?  It's quite possible that some of those very homeless men, women, and children could be angels from God waiting to see how we'll respond to them as we pass by.  Ever thought about it like that?  We think if we toss a crumpled one dollar bill out of our window as we pass them on the exit ramp that we've done a good deed, but have we really?  What was that person's name?  Or, does it not matter because you'll never see them again? 

As I've thought about that ribbon more and more, I've decided that I want to make footprints worth following, and not just small prints but big ones.  I want my footprints to be so filled with love for other people that anyone who chooses to follow in them wont know anything else outside of love.  "We're human so that can't really be done.  We're emotional and we get angry" we think.  But isn't it true that with God, all things are possible?  (Matthew 19:26).  Jesus said that with man, it's impossible but that with God all things are possible.  He didn't say some things are possible.  He said all things!  Moreover, we're commanded by God to love, so if He commands us to do it, He will certainly equip us!

So, how do we make footprints filled with love?  One step at a time.  If you find yourself taking a step that's filled with resentment, don't take that step.  Wait until you can replace it with love before you step forward.  If you find yourself angry with someone you love, don't step in anger.  You never know who's watching and will then model their own steps after yours.  If you see someone hurting on the side of the road, don't keep walking by and pretend not to see them.  Just as you do see them, God sees you, both when you walk past and also when you stop and offer help.  I promise He will smile into your life when He sees you stop. "Well, who are you to tell me what to do and how to walk?" you may ask. I'm just a lowly sinner who is clumsily trying to do things God's way instead of my own way; and I'm not telling you what to do or how to live your life.  This is just a blog where I share my own thoughts on life and living, but as it turns out - you're on here reading it so it could be that God wanted you to read these words just as He wanted me to read the words "Make Footprints Worth Following." Do I necessarily know how to take every step in love?  No, but God does and if I ask for His help, I know He'll lead me.  

I've made some pretty muddy footprints in my own life, so I'm certainly not judging anyone else for theirs, but it's not about those  footprints anymore - neither mine nor yours;  like one of my previous entries said - we should look ahead and not back.  It's about the footprints we're making now, and with God's help let's all choose to make today's in love.  Have a fantastic day everyone and for the football fans, enjoy tomorrow's Super Bowl!

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